Duchamp, Childhood, Work and Play: The Vernissage for First Papers of Surrealism, New York, 1942 - Tate Research Repository
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Duchamp, Childhood, Work and Play: The Vernissage for First Papers of Surrealism, New York, 1942

2014

Abstract

Visitors to the opening of the First Papers of Surrealism exhibition in New York in 1942 were disorientated, not only by Marcel Duchamp’s famous ‘mile of string’ installation, but also by the presence of a group of children who, at Duchamp’s instigation, bounced balls and played hopscotch among them. This paper looks closely at the implications of this dramatic incursion of play into the gallery setting, arguing that this seemingly minor intervention was a significant comment on avant-garde attitudes to work and play.

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